Coffee is one of the most popular beverages in the world, and more than half of all American adults consider the drink to be a staple in their daily routine. However, coffee can wreak havoc on the appearance and structure of your teeth over time.
You do not have to stop drinking your regular cup of coffee in order to preserve your smile though as long as you practice precautions. Dr. Adam Carraway, a dentist practicing in Greer, SC, lists three potential oral health risks that you should be aware of while drinking coffee.
How Can Coffee Hurt My Smile?
Coffee gets its dark coloring from tannins, substances that can transfer to your tooth enamel and absorb to form stains on the surface of your smile. Deep stains cannot be removed with your usual oral hygiene regimen. You may begin to feel self-conscious about the look of your smile with this tooth discoloration.
Adding milk to your drink, sipping through a straw, and selecting a lighter-colored brew may reduce your risk of staining your teeth but will not eliminate the chances completely. Dental professionals recommend visiting your dentist for routine teeth cleanings and enjoying coffee in moderation to protect your tooth color. If you notice yellowing, dullness, or stains in your smile, ask your dentist about teeth whitening treatment.
Tooth Enamel Erosion
Coffee has a bitter taste naturally, so many people add sugar to their drink to boost its flavor and make it sweeter. However, sugar is notoriously bad for your teeth because it reacts with the bacteria in your mouth to become acidic.
This acid can erode the outer layer of your tooth, enamel, to expose the vulnerable interior of your teeth. You may experience painful tooth sensitivity and other uncomfortable sensations.
It will also heighten your risk of developing cavities. You can protect the structure of your smile by avoiding added sugar wherever possible, including in your coffee.
One of the most appealing aspects of drinking coffee for many individuals is the boost of caffeine that accompanies a cup of this beverage. But a side effect of caffeine consumption is dehydration, a condition that may lead to many health concerns, including in your smile.
Low hydration levels can cause dry mouth, a condition that stems from decreased saliva production. The resulting dry environment in the mouth will allow bacteria to spread across teeth with ease and increase an individual’s risk for oral infections like gum disease. You can avoid this issue by drinking plenty of water along with your coffee to stay hydrated.
Preserve Your Smile with Your Dentist in Greer, SC
Carraway Family and Cosmetic Dentistry offers professional teeth whitening services and other cosmetic dental treatments to patients in Greer, SC. Dr. Carraway also specializes in general and restorative dentistry, including periodontal care, for patients of all ages. To schedule a consultation or appointment with our practice, contact our staff by phone at 864.383.9711 or reach our office online.